NG Kok Song

SINGAPORE: He may not have won the Presidential Election earlier this year, but businessman Ng Kok Song came in number one on the list of Yahoo’s top 5 most-searched Singapore business leaders.

Two other presidential hopefuls also made the list—Mr George Goh, who was disqualified from contesting but ranked second on the search engine’s list, and Mr Tan Kin Lian, who came in last in the election but was Yahoo’s third most-searched Singapore business leaders.

And here’s the Top 5 most-searched Singapore business leaders:

  1. Ng Kok Song
  2. George Goh
  3. Tan Kin Lian
  4. Ong Beng Seng
  5. Sim Wong Hoo

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Mr Ong Beng Seng, the man responsible for bringing Formula One into Singapore but who was unfortunately touched by scandal this year, and Mr Sim Wong Hoo—who at one point was the youngest billionaire in the country—round out the top five.

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A Singapore-based Malaysian tycoon, Mr Ong built his fortune as a hotelier and launched the Singapore Grand Prix in 2008. A friend of F1 boss Bernie Eccleston, he helped seal the deal in 2007 that brought the race to Singapore. However, in July, the billionaire businessman was given a notice of arrest linked to an investigation involving Transport Minister S Iswaran.

As for Mr Sim, he was the founding chairman and chief executive of Creative Technology. Unfortunately, he passed away at 67 last January. Yahoo noted that he was first to be named Businessman of the Year twice, in 1992 and 1997.

Read also: Ong Beng Seng appears at SG F1 amid ongoing CPIB probe

As for the man in pole position, Mr Ng made quite a splash when he threw his hat into the presidential ring, as the former GIC Chief Investment Officer and proponent of meditation was not well known. Rumours that he would be contesting began in mid-July when Wake Up, Singapore reported that the 75-year-old businessman could be mounting a presidential bid.

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Mr Ng was with the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC) for 42 years, serving as Group Chief Investment Officer from 2007 until his retirement in 2013. He is a 2012 awardee of the Meritorious Service Medal from the Singapore Government. When he retired, he was praised in a Facebook post by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

Singaporeans were intrigued by the candidate, especially when he introduced his fiancée, Singaporean-Canadian businesswoman Sybil Lay, who is three decades his junior. Mr Ng’s cat, Max Lemon Ng, who has his own social media account, also helped gain attention for the candidate. /TISG